On the Job Extra Credit

Remember when you were in school and you had a hard test, and it kicked your butt?  The saving grace was always when the teacher would give you extra credit to help you make up for that bad test grade!

I loved extra credit!

You know what never happened?  I never got extra credit for just showing up to class.

Why is that?

You see, you don’t get extra credit for doing what you’re supposed to do.  You need to do ‘extra’!

We are currently caught in a vicious employment performance cycle where your employees want extra credit for showing up, and guess what?  You’re giving it to them!

Your employees are showing up and doing the job that you’re paying them to do, and they want you to give them extra credit for doing what they’re supposed to do.  Weak leaders and organizations do this all the time.

Why is this?

They don’t rightly define the difference between what is expected and what you get extra credit for.  Once you define this, giving out extra credit is fun! Not entitled.

Don’t get me wrong, I desperately want to give out extra credit to employees!  I truly don’t think many actually want extra credit, but for those who do, I want to make sure they know exactly how to get it, and what’s in it for them when they decide to give that extra effort.

You know what they call this in HR business?

Performance management.

4 thoughts on “On the Job Extra Credit

  1. I used to see this all the time with my entry level team when I worked in a hotel. They wanted a reward just for showing up and checking in the guests according to the brand standard. I often wanted to tell them “I thought that was what the paycheck was for.”

    Darcy – I’ve seen that a lot, managers that think meeting expectations is merely a “C student” so very frustrating!

  2. This is brilliant. I may point managers to this post when I can’t convince them that doing what’s expected is actually “meeting expectations.” This is concise and might make more sense to them since they insist on believing that meeting expectations is like being a “C student.”

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